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Encyclopedia Judaica: Ha-Po'el Ha-Za'ir

HA-PO'EL HA-ẒA'IR (Heb. הַפּוֹעֵל הצָּעִיר; "The Young Worker"), first newspaper of the labor movement in Ereẓ Israel; founded in 1907. After five years as a biweekly, Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir became a weekly, which it remained until it ceased publication in 1970. During its lifespan, the paper attained a continuity of publication enjoyed by no other Hebrew periodical. There were, however, periods during which the paper did not appear: it was discontinued in 1915 and renewed in the fall of 1918. Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir was edited by Yosef *Aharonovitch until 1923, and then by Yiẓḥak *Laufbahn until his death in 1948, and finally by Israel *Cohen . It was the organ of the Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir Party. When that party merged with *Ahdut ha-Avodah to become Mifleget Po'alei Ereẓ Israel ( *Mapai ), the paper became the organ of Mapai (1930), and from 1968 of Mifleget ha-Avodah ha-Yisre'elit ( *Israel Labor Party ). Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir reflected the development of the Israel labor movement. The pioneers of this movement could not identify with the existing Hebrew papers, and established Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir with the meager resources at their disposal. The paper's ideology, expressed in its motto: "An indispensable condition for the realization of Zionism is the conquest of all branches of labor in Ereẓ Israel by the Jews," attracted all Second Aliyah workers until the founding of the Po'alei Zion paper Ha-Aḥdut in 1910. Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir expressed the party's persistent demand that the Zionist Organization implement practical Zionism, and also encouraged the use of Hebrew as the common language of the yishuv. Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir became the most distinguished paper in Ereẓ Israel during the Second Aliyah. Its contributors were among the best Hebrew authors and journalists, some of whom first appeared in print in this paper. Among the early regular contributors were: A.D. Gordon, J.Ḥ. Brenner, Ya'akov Rabinowitz, Rabbi Binyamin, S.Y. Agnon, Yiẓḥak Elazari-Volcani (then Wilkanski), and Moshe Smilanski. Its excellent literary supplement was edited during its first years by Devorah *Baron . A complete index of authors and subjects in Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir during the 50 years 1907–57 was compiled by Isa and G. Kressel in 1968.


Y. Laufbahn (ed.), Arba'im Shanah (1947); Ha-Po'el ha-Ẓa'ir (June 12, 1957; Sept. 26, 1967); G. Kressel, in: Asuppot, 4 (1954), 44–65, 5 (1957), 108–20.

[Getzel Kressel]

Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.